Arts In Education
Since 2015, Gaston Arts Council has provided over $5,000 in financial support to classrooms within Gaston County Public Schools for the creation of projects which demonstrate the integration of arts and science, arts and technology, arts and engineering, and/or arts and math (STEAM).
The art teachers connect with their colleagues in the science, technology, engineering and/or math departments to plan the project and then work with the students to create and implement the project. The projects are meant to create cross collaboration among departments to incorporate the arts to enhance the students’ grasp of their existing coursework in subjects like and related to science, technology, engineering and math as well as factor in the effective use of creativity. It is encouraged that the STEAM focused projects, for the upper grades, relate to workforce readiness. Some of the completed projects included: Recycled Art Garden, Art Movements: Mechanical Sculpture, Kinetic Sculpture and The Art of Force & Motion Roller Coaster. Click to view the Grant application guidelines.
As of February 2017, Gaston Arts Council has made a bi-annual commitment of $9,000 to fund the Wolf Trap Early Learning Through the Arts Program in (5) Pre-K Title 1 Classrooms. This is a partnership with Gaston County Schools Pre-K Department, and North Carolina Wolf Trap. The program brings performing artists into Pre-Kindergarten classrooms for a seven-week residency. Through active engagement and collaboration with teaching artists in music, drama and creative movement, early childhood professionals gain a hands-on understanding of the connection between developmentally appropriate performing arts experiences and the acceleration of children’s learning in literacy. Each Wolf Trap residency is intended to enhance student learning through arts integration, provide professional development to teachers in their own classrooms with their own students, and help teachers and parents develop methods of making the arts a part of their daily interaction with children.